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Article
February 1951

THE EISENMENGER COMPLEX AND ITS RELATION TO THE UNCOMPLICATED DEFECT OF THE VENTRICULAR SEPTUMReview of Thirty-Five Autopsied Cases of Eisenmenger's Complex, Including Two New Cases

Author Affiliations

SAN FRANCISCO

From the Departments of Medicine and Pathology, Stanford University School of Medicine, and the San Francisco Hospital (Department of Public Health, City and County of San Francisco).

AMA Arch Intern Med. 1951;87(2):218-241. doi:10.1001/archinte.1951.03810020040005
Abstract

VICTOR Eisenmenger1 in 1897 reported the case of a cyanotic adult who at autopsy was observed to have a large ventricular septal defect. Twenty-five years later, Maude Abbott2 brought into focus the fact that in Eisenmenger's case the aorta was overriding the defect of the septum. She separated this malformation from the simple ventricular septal defect on one hand and the tetralogy of Fallot on the other and named it "the Eisenmenger complex." In the last few years this syndrome has attracted much attention, as the diagnosis of the Eisenmenger complex was considered to be a contraindication for the performance of surgical procedures devised for the relief of cyanosis.

The Eisenmenger complex is usually presented as a cyanotic form of congenital heart disease consisting of a high defect of the ventricular septum, the aorta overriding the defect and dilatation of the pulmonary vessels, with an unobstructed pulmonary orifice.

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